Since the middle of last century, we have encountered in certain currents within the theology of the Western industrialized countries, however, a decidedly optimistic attitude with respect to the world or—we can formulate it more accurately—with respect to the form that the world has assumed in modern times. One of the characteristics of this form of the world is modernity’s optimistic assessment of its own future prospects. Although in recent decades, a change in mentality with respect to history has taken place in secular culture, leading to a sharp decline in world-affirming optimism, nevertheless within the Church theological movements are again prominent which remain trapped in the optimistic paradigms of the middle of the last century.
The recent Synod of Bishops, which was concerned with Catholic teaching on marriage and the family, and therefore also with sexual morality, provides a striking example of this fact. One of the key opinion leaders in this Synod was Walter Cardinal Kasper, one of the most influential theologians of the second half of the last century. In order to understand and evaluate the positions taken by Kasper at the Synod and also in the run-up to the Synod, it is necessary to familiarize oneself with the basic themes of his theology and the principles and axioms on which his theology is based. This presentation will try to contribute to an understanding of Kasper’s principles from a philosophical point of view.
And, if you did not catch Raymond Arroyo’s excellent interview with Cardinal Kasper on The World Over on EWTN last week, do listen to it. In it, Cardinal Kasper backtracks considerably from the position he had taken previously that Pope Francis supports his proposal.